How to Properly Execute a Standing Kimura
Traditionally, if we are in a stand up situation in a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu match, we are looking for takedowns, snap downs, and potentially guillotines if one is comfortable. More advanced and exciting competitors will even opt for a variety of jumping submissions such as the flying triangle, flying armbar, etc. Even more so, practitioners who like leg attacks can attempt techniques like iminari rolls to get to leg entanglement positions.
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Unfortunately, the attacks I mentioned above are either low percentage or unattractive to many grapplers. The majority of pracitioners will not attempt a flying submission or iminari roll, especially early in their game. These attacks are all proactive techniques too, which is great, but we also need some reactive moves to attempt if we get caught in a bad position while wrestling. One example of these techniques is a simple guillotine one someone attempts a single or double leg.
One of the most underutilized standing attacks in Jiu Jitsu is the kimura attack. We often think of the kimura as being one thing, a shoulder lock. The kimura, however, can be used for far more than just that. The kimura can be used to pass guards, prevent guard passes, take the back, and of course, take people down.
A standing kimura attack you see occasionally in MMA occurs when some gets trapped from behind. If the defender doesn’t react fast enough, they will definitely get taken down. As a response, the defender will break the grip and wrap up a kimura while turning. From here, it is easy to takedown one’s opponent.
In the following video, MMA and grappling expert Kazushi Sakuraba illustrates how to break your opponent’s grip, wrap up a kimura, and take down your opponent with great detail. See below:
A huge tip I give every newer grappler is that when using a kimura from anywhere, adjust your grip so that your thumbs are next to your index fingers, aka monkey grips, rather than standard grips. This allows you to have more mobility and power against your opponent. Also, after ending up in a t-kimura position like Sakuraba shows, you can proceed with many different responses depending on what the defender does. If they start coming up, you can swing your legs around and get a quick back take.
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